'Horrific Damage' Alleged in Death Case
1-22-2016 04:55:00

(CN) - A Kaiser doctor botched two surgical procedures that caused a man extreme pain and suffering before he finally died almost 11 months later, his family claims in federal court.

Thomas Leonard, II, 73, underwent an exploratory esophagogasroduodenoscopy and colonoscopy on Dec. 18, 2013, but was injured by the procedures that ultimately led to 11 months of surgeries in repeated unsuccessful attempts to repair the damage, according to a five-page complaint filed in Boulder, Colo. 
“It would appear from the subsequent medical records that during each procedure a perforation was encountered, the duodenum was perforated by virtue of the upper endoscopy procedure and the cecum (bowel) was perforated by the colonoscopy,” the complaint states. 
Wife Judy Leonard says in part that the procedures were performed “in an overly aggressive fashion,” that hospital staff prematurely discharged their patient, that they did not respond appropriately to her concerns about her husband and that the procedures caused “horrific damage” to him, ultimately leading to his death.
Specifically she says that as a result of Doctor Joseph Cassara’s action, her husband “developed enormous complications which required almost a full 11 months of medical care, multiple abdominal and bowel surgeries, painful and horrific procedures, was required to suffer enormously, and ultimately became so deconditioned and ill that he was unable to survive.”
Leonard says a coroner’s report confirms that the death was caused by the two initial procedures performed by Cassara.
Judy Leonard and her children Thomas Leonard, III and Lisa Lamb sued Cassara, Colorado Permanente Group P.C. and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Colorado for negligence.
They seek damages and attorneys’ fees.
The plaintiffs are represented by John Astuno, Jr., in Denver.